Interested in training for your team? Click here to learn more

Agency Regulation After West Virginia v. EPA: Climate Change, Major Questions Doctrine, Future of Chevron

Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE webinar will address the recent SCOTUS decision in West Virginia v. EPA which held that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had exceeded the authority granted by Congress under the Clean Air Act in issuing limitations on greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. The panel will also discuss the recently applied "major questions doctrine" that the Court has established for interpreting the limits of administrative power and how this case may affect the Chevron doctrine, as well as the future of climate change regulations.


In West Virginia v. EPA, the Supreme Court struck down the never-executed centerpiece of the Obama administration's climate policy: the Clean Power Plan, a set of rules governing fossil-fuel-fired electric generators. Just as importantly, Chief Justice John Roberts, writing for a 6-3 majority, announced in no uncertain terms that the basis for the Court's decision was the "major questions doctrine," a phrase no Supreme Court majority had previously invoked explicitly.

The major questions doctrine comes from a number of decisions from the Roberts Court that all address executive agencies asserting highly consequential power "beyond what Congress could reasonably be understood to have granted." Rather than treating such assertions of power as normal statutory interpretations, in which judges are highly deferential to agency choices, courts are to approach extraordinary, novel actions with far-reaching consequences with a greater degree of skepticism. If Congress wishes to effect a sweeping overhaul of the nation's economic activity, it must do so quite explicitly--with a "clear congressional authorization."

This new doctrine may be on the verge of overturning the long-standing Chevron doctrine which states when a legislative delegation to an administrative agency on a particular issue or question is not explicit but implicit, a court may not substitute its own interpretation of the statute for a reasonable interpretation made by the administrative agency. This will have a major impact on not only regulations implemented by the EPA, but also on other executive agencies and the future of climate change regulation.

Listen as our authoritative panel discusses the long-term implications of West Virginia v. EPA and how the major questions doctrine may revolutionize the administrative state.



  1. West Virginia v. EPA
    1. History of case
    2. Major questions doctrine
      1. History of the doctrine
      2. Chevron
    3. Climate change
    4. Future of administrative regulation


The panel will discuss these and other key issues:

  • What is the history of the major questions doctrine?
  • How does the decision in West Virginia v. EPA affect the future of administrative regulation?
  • What is the likely state of the Chevron doctrine?
  • How will West Virginia v. EPA affect climate change regulation?


Austin, Anne
Anne Idsal Austin

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

Ms. Austin, a nationally recognized environmental lawyer who has held several high-profile federal and state regulatory...  |  Read More

Christensen, Eric
Eric L. Christensen

Beveridge & Diamond

Mr. Christensen is one of the Pacific Northwest’s leading energy and natural resources attorneys. His practice...  |  Read More

Macfarlan, Tad
Tad J. Macfarlan

K&L Gates

Mr. Macfarlan advises the firm’s energy, industrial, utility and commercial sector clients on compliance with...  |  Read More

Access Anytime, Anywhere

Strafford will process CLE credit for one person on each recording. All formats include course handouts.

To find out which recorded format will provide the best CLE option, select your state:

CLE On-Demand Video